Cats are often thought of as being unfriendly as they like to be alone most of the time. Well, they’re just independent animals because their ancestors are solitary predators. From time to time, however, they can exhibit clinginess. Sometimes, they can become extra clingy, too, prompting their owners to ask: “why is my cat so attached to me lately?”
As a general rule, most cats become suddenly attached when they are lonely, stressed, anxious, insecure, confused, or freezing cold. Aging cats and those with declining health become more clingy and dependent, too. Pregnant female cats become attached all of a sudden when they’re about to give birth.
Nothing can be more frustrating to a cat lover and owner than not knowing what their feline friends need each time it’s obvious that they need something from them, usually as evidenced by their begging for time and attention.
Below, we will talk about some of the most probable reasons why your cat is so attached to you lateley — all nine of them!
Keep on reading if your whiskered chum means the world to you and want to figure out what it wants from you to keep it from feeling neglected and alone, and for you to finally enjoy some peace and quiet, too.
But First: Some Cats are Naturally Clingy
One of the reasons why many prefer to take care of cats than dogs is that felines are generally more low-maintenance and independent than their barking counterparts.
It’s because of this why cats are ideal for someone who would like to have a pet but doesn’t have all the time in the world to stroke its ears, chin and cheeks.
While cats prefer to be left alone most of their waking hours, they love to exhibit clinginess from time to time, too.
There are felines that are naturally clingy than the rest — they prefer to sit or lie next to their owners or grab their attention all the time.
Usually, these cats never obtained enough love and attention or have gone through hell while growing up. It’s because of this why adopted stray or shelter cats tend to be the clingiest.
Worry not that you might lose your personal space to a stray or shelter cat. After some time, it will end up being happy getting just the right amount of attention, just like most cats, the moment it realizes it now has a home. So, if an adopted cat is too affectionate, it’s just thanking you for making it feel wanted and loved.
Different Reasons for Excessive Attachment
Cats have nine lives. There are also nine possible answers to why they are suddenly seeking your company.
Knowing them allows you to address the causative factor without delay, reinstating your pet’s former independence and contentment, as well as reestablishing your confidence in being an awesome cat lover and owner.
So, without further ado, here are nine reasons why your feline friend is extra clingy lately…
Earlier, it was mentioned that most cats prefer to be alone most of the time, which is why some people think that they make for some of the most unfriendly and unaffectionate pets.
It’s true that cats are merely independent animals instead of arrogant and aloof.
However, it doesn’t mean that they don’t get sick and tired of being alone most of their waking hours. When loneliness kicks in, they spring into action by approaching their owners. And, most of the time, they become exceptionally clingy.
The good news is that your cat will go back to wanting a normal amount of attention from you as soon as it no longer feels lonely and alone after spending some time on your lap.
Sometimes, cats may pretend to be lonely when they want something, which brings us to this question…
Why is my cat so affectionate in the morning?
Cats are affectionate in the morning because they want their owners to be already as active as them. Most of the time, they are asking for food, especially if their owners sleep for a very long time. If cats do not eat for more than 12 hours, they look for food to ease their hyperacidity and nausea.
If your cat seems to be really clingy in the morning, check if a handful of kibbles will do the trick.
When people are stressed, they engage in all sorts of stress-relieving activities to help calm their bodies and mind and fend off health-related concerns associated with chronic or too much stress.
One proven effective way to deal with stress is connecting with family and friends.
Cats may not have hectic workplaces to go to or exorbitant bills to take care of, but they can get stressed, too.
Loud noises, home remodeling, travel, veterinary clinic trips — these are just some of the things that cause a lot of stress in cats.
You can tell that your cat is experiencing stress if it’s grooming itself excessively, refusing to eat, vocalizing a lot, hiding most of the time, and not using the litter box correctly or at all.
In many instances, a stressed cat becomes attached to its owner more than usual.
So, if it seems like your purring pal is unusually affectionate as of late, it could be stressed. Figure out the trigger, deal with it or keep it to a minimum, and spend some fun and reassuring time with your cat until its high-stress levels subside.
Besides, just like in humans, too much stress is bad for a cat’s physical and mental health.
Anxious About The New Pet
Just about anything that can make you anxious can also give your cat a bout of anxiety. And when your cat is anxious, it tends to behave differently, such as being more attached to you than usual.
To a cat, nothing can be more anxiety-inducing than having another pet welcomed into your home.
Your four-legged friend might worry that the additional member of the family will take up plenty of your attention, feed on most of its food, and occupy much of the available living space.
When anxious, most cats turn to their owners to ease their worries and make themselves feel fine.
Being extra clingy is one of the things that cats do when uneasy — nothing can ease their anxiety more than grabbing the attention of someone whom they trust and feel understands them.
Failure to alleviate your cat’s worries may lead to unfavorable behaviors, such as those that it tends to exhibit when under a lot of stress.
It’s not just a new pet that can leave a cat anxious but also a new person. Anxiety may kick in, too, when a cat suddenly has to share the home with its owner’s family member, spouse or friend.
Cats may want to spend most of their waking hours away from their owners alright.
However, it doesn’t mean that they don’t want any owners.
As a matter of fact, most cats are possessive of their human parents. Many won’t hesitate to protect their owners if necessary — in some instances, they can be protective to the point of aggression!
If you focus more of your time and attention on another pet or a particular person or object, your cat may experience not only jealousy but also insecurity.
The problem with insecure cats is that they tend to express their feelings in different ways.
For instance, some felines will stay away from their owners as a display of their mood. Others may fear or hate their owners, as evidenced by dilated pupils, vocalizations, hairs standing on end, arched backs, and tails lashing or tucked under or around their bodies.
Besides being distant or aggressive, cats may also become super affectionate when insecure.
Since it feels like its place in your heart is in peril, it’s not unlikely for your cat to seek reassurance from you that it won’t be neglected and will remain your number one friend.
The good news is that your cat’s insecurity will go away when it gets accustomed to the animal, person, or thing that’s wreaking havoc on its confidence.
Confused about New Routine or Place
As they say, change is the only constant thing in life.
Change can be both exciting and nerve-racking, which is why many people pursue and welcome it. Cats, on the other hand, absolutely hate change.
Because they don’t like change, felines end up expressing their disgust in different ways. For instance, a 2011 experiment found out that healthy cats would act as though they are sick in the presence of change. On the other hand, many sick cats would have 75% to 80% less symptom burden after establishing a stable and enriching environment.
Pretending to be sick is not something that many cats do when confused as a result of environmental changes.
Some of them may become more attached to their owner than before, in hopes of reinstating an earlier environment or getting the assurance they need that the change won’t affect their relationship with their owners by a lot.
And because change is stressful, they may also act aloof or angry, like when stressed.
For your cat’s peace of mind and for your peace and quiet, too, it’s a good idea to keep a routine and make your cat feel as comfortable as possible to show it that the change is not that big of a deal.
The normal body temperature of people ranges anywhere from 97°F to 99°F. On the other hand, the normal body temperature of felines ranges anywhere from 99.5°F to 102.5°F.
Because they have a slightly higher core body temperature, cats can tolerate heat so much better than people.
Besides tolerating heat better than their owners, cats also love heat!
It’s because of this exactly why cats love laying in the sun — where there’s direct sunlight, there’s a cat happily taking a trip to dreamland. It’s also due to having a higher core temperature why they love tight spaces.
When it’s too cold for your cat, it will seek the sun. And when there’s no sun, it will look for other sources of heat, such as your body.
This is why it’s very much possible for your cat to be extra affectionate during the coldest months of the year. Although there is no denying that it loves you dearly, it loves the heat your body generates even more.
And this takes us to this pressing question…
Why is my cat overly affectionate at night?
Most cats are overly affectionate at night because they don’t like the lower temperature. Being right next to their owners allows them to get additional heat. Sometimes, cats are excessively affectionate at night because they want dinner or know that their owners will go to sleep anytime soon.
Cats are nocturnal animals, which is why they tend to be more active and clingy when the sun goes down.
Nervous About Labor
Is your cat female and in the family way?
It knows that it’s in a vulnerable state, and being around you more gives it much-needed peace of mind. It is very much likely for your feline pet to be even clingier when it’s just a couple of days from giving birth to its babies.
Check the calendar — a cat’s pregnancy lasts anywhere from 63 to 67 days.
However, it varies from cat to cat. It can be as short as 61 days, or it can be as long as 71 days.
Besides being clingy, other signs that your cat with some buns in its oven is about to give birth to a litter of kittens include nesting, panting, excessive grooming and increased vocalization.
Most pregnant cats prefer to be left alone when giving birth — check that it’s safe and let it do its motherly job.
Thanks to advancements in veterinary medicine and pet care, cats are living longer than ever — the average lifespan of cats nowadays ranges from 13 to 17 years. As a matter of fact, some cats live up to 20 years or longer!
When they celebrate their 10th birthday, cats are already considered seniors.
And just like senior humans, the health of senior cats also degenerates more and more as they get older and older. It’s not unlikely for older cats to experience joint pain and stiffness. It’s also not unlikely for older cats to have impaired eyesight and hearing.
Because their peepers are not as keen and their hearing is not as sharp as when they’re younger, cats already in their senior years commonly turn to their owners for assistance.
If your cat has been with you for already a very long time, it’s perfectly normal for your aging four-legged friend to be around you all the time because it trusts you more than it does its senses. It also knows that you will surely protect it from a larger animal or a younger, more territorial male cat.
Taking your aging cat to the vet regularly for check-ups can help keep age-related problems under control.
Experiencing Health Issues
Speaking of taking your feline friend to the vet, another reason why cats become so attached to their owners suddenly is that they are going through something that they don’t understand.
Besides wanting to be alone most of the time, cats also like to deal with various life problems on their own.
It’s for this reason why they refuse to give their owners hints that they’re not in the pink of health until such time that what they are experiencing is too much for them to bear — they let their owners know by getting clingy.
However, some cats will do the complete opposite and distance themselves from their owners and other animals.
If it seems like your cat is particularly affectionate (or unusually aloof) lately, look for some signs that there could be something wrong with its health.
Some of the red flags include vocalization, lethargy, diarrhea, changes in eating habits and weight loss (or sometimes sudden weight gain).
Needless to say, immediately take your cat to the vet the minute you suspect that something’s not right.
Just Before You Try to Have More Space
It’s perfectly fine for cats to be clingy from time to time. After all, it’s one of the things that make these purring creatures adorable, especially when they exploit their big eyes for attention, too.
Becoming so attached to their owners all of a sudden, however, is a completely different story. In many instances, cats that seem to go from being pretty much independent to being completely needy want to say something but can’t, which is why their owners have no other choice but to figure out why their purring pals want their attention 24/7.
Above, we talked about answers (all nine of them) to the question: “why is my cat so attached to ma lately?”
Some of the reasons behind the sudden clinginess of your four-legged friend can be dealt with by the two of you, while others require a trip to the veterinary clinic. Either way, it’s a must that you do your best to determine the cause so that you can have some peace and quiet at home, and your cat won’t feel that you don’t have time for it.
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Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent those of The Pet Rescue.